October 1, 2017 – Masthope, Pennsylvania
Length: Approximately 2.3 miles
Max elevation: 1,177 ft.– total elevation gain approximately 159 ft.
Route type: Circuit
Trailhead parking: Masthope Plank Road, Hawley, PA 18428
State Game Lands No. 316, consists of 2,600 acres and is located in Pike County near Masthope. The terrain is predominantly forested with 46-acre Cobey Pond and 2-1/2 miles of trout streams located on the tract. The most prevalent wildlife species are deer, turkey, grouse and bear.
The Cobey Pond Trail is one of six trails featured in the “Take a Hike!” brochure, which gives names, locations, descriptions, and difficulty levels of trails in the Upper Delaware River Valley. It also provides a checklist to keep track of the trails you’ve hiked which can be turned in upon completion for a “Take a Hike!” patch.
Having just completed the Bouchoux Trail and the Damascus Forest Trail, we were now on to hike #3 on the list. Cell phone service was nonexistent in this area and a GPS signal was hard to come by. My recommendation is to print the directions from one trailhead to the other to avoid wasting time waiting for a signal while driving aimlessly. Since we got a late start in the morning, we didn’t arrive at the parking area for the Cobey Pond Trail until shortly before 4:30 pm. The National Park Service lists this trail as 3 miles long, but it is actually more like 2.3 miles. They also list it as a moderate hike, but with minimal elevation gain, I disagree and rated it as easy. We did this hike counter-clockwise.
From the research I did prior to to doing this hike, I learned that after entering the parking area, not to park in the first lot. Instead, I followed the gravel road up the hill for about 1/4 mile and parked in upper lot. The trail begins on the other side of the gated road at the northern end of the parking area.
The trail is not marked, but easy to follow. A short distance after the gate, the trail comes to a fork. Either way gets you to Cobey Pond, but we took the right fork because it was less steep and returned via the left fork, downhill.
In just under 3/4 of a mile, we arrived at Cobey Pond.
Beautiful and tranquil, this place doesn’t seem to get much foot traffic.
We saw a two other people near the lake, but we basically had the place to ourselves.
The Cobey Pond Trail continues along the southern shore of the pond and turns left to continue heading north, skirting the edge of the pond. There are several woods roads that intersect, but we stayed close to the pond. There are partial views of the pond through the high weeds, but none to get excited about.
The trail wraps around the northern end of the pond and the view opens up once again.
The trail comes to a fork at the northwest edge of the pond. We took the right fork which heads back to the parking area on a grassy woods road. There are several intersections along the way, but we continued straight, heading south.
The grassy woods road ends at the gravel road that we walked on earlier and we turned right.
In another 500 feet, we reached the gate where we began our hike.
This headless stuffed animal was perched in a tree in the parking area.
Since this trail is located in State Game Lands, orange should be worn when exploring the area.
This was a very nice hike to end the day with. Cobey Pond is a hidden gem and I am glad that we visited this very scenic area. Three hikes down and three to go to earn that patch. Stay tuned, our next hike will be the Tusten Mountain Trail.
Pros: Scenic pond, secluded area, easy hike, wide woods roads.
Cons: Trail not marked, hunting grounds.